Monthly Archives: April 2013

Burlesque Me Baby!

Now this post is a bit of a departure from a messy play ideas or a toddler tantrum update, but I am SO excited to be writing it.

Look up “Burlesque” in a dictionary and you may be surprised to find a definition along these lines:

“An artistic composition, ludicrous parody or comical imitation, that, for the sake of laughter, treats ordinary material with mockery.”

In other words, I suspect many people have the wrong idea about Burlesque, thinking in fact that it goes no deeper than Dita Von Tease and the like posing in nipple tassels. But go to any decent burlesque show and you’re likely to find a mostly female audience having a marvelous time watching women empowered, looking beautiful, skillfully and comically showcasing this historical “Art of the Tease”. Rarely that revealing, and a world away from a regular strip-joint. Burlesque has class, history, feathers, fans and FUN!

Personally, I love a bit of it. So I’m super excited about working with “Burlesque Me Baby!” This means sometime soon – in the name of devotion to blogging of course (and an overly encouraging husband) – I will be getting “Burlesqued” . . . . EEEEEK! Here’s a bit about them and what they do:

Pin-up imagery and burlesque performance has always been intended as a celebration of women’s bodies, sensuality, and personality. Not that long ago, in a land not too far away, childhood best friends Lauren Oppelt (stylist) and Blair Hopkins (photographer), conceived of an event that would combine the glamour of classic pin-up with a fun and body-positive photo shoot experience. Over the course of the last two years, that event has become “Burlesque Me, Baby!” the world’s best girl’s night in!
BMB Logo
When you book our team for a “Burlesque Me, Baby!” event, you will undergo one hour of hair, makeup and wardrobe styling to create your two looks with celebrity stylist Lauren Oppelt. You’ll spend an hour in front of the camera with Blair Hopkins, capturing your inner pin-up goddess! Between sets, members of your group can relax with a glass of (complimentary) champagne and decadent snacks. Within a few days, you will receive digital copies of our 5 favorite fully-retouched shots, as well as up to 15 additional images.

A little about the team:

Lauren Oppelt has dressed celebrities in LA and New York on Broadway and HBO, and for television shows such as Saturday Night Live, The Jimmy Fallon Show, Conan O’Brian, and more. A burlesque performer herself, Lauren brings a funky, modern twist to classic glamour with her intense passion and ingenuity. Fun fact: Comedian Russell Brand once called Lauren “the physical embodiment of the concept of power”. Actor Tim Curry refers to her as “a wicked girl”.

Blair and Lauren

Blair and Lauren

Wayfaring Photo owner Blair Hopkins has been shooting pin-up, burlesque, and fetish portraiture on both coasts for the last five years. She cut her teeth on the scene in Seattle with production companies such as Burning Hearts Burlesque and Urban Bombshells and has since been tearing it up in New York City. Most recently, she’s had images published in newspapers in Seattle, Manhattan, and San Francisco. Her upcoming book, “All In A Day’s (Sex) Work”, photographically chronicles the daily lives of sex workers across the nation. Blair’s extensive and diverse experience in the industry has garnered her unique ability to make women of all experience levels feel comfortable in their skin and help them come alive in front of the camera.

So – Run by women, for women, and with a ton of experience, these lovely ladies are heading to us Brits all the way from the U.S of A to spread some Burlesque love! Exciting!

NB – This is NOT a Burlesque show, this is all about the opportunity to have a Burlesque Me Baby makeover/photoshoot/experience.

Blair and Lauren's work

Cool eh? So . . . here’s the shizzle. There are a few events coming up. The one in Wales sounds amazing and they still have places left for bookings. Here’s what Burlesque Me Baby had to say about it in their own words:

“Our event in Llanwrtyd Wells, Wales, is June 1st/2nd, and is a very special event.  We are bringing in a burlesque dance instructor to do lessons, there’s a movie night on the first night (May 31st), and on Sunday, there is a 50’s/rockabilly-themed dance that is open to the public. Cerdyn Villa  is offering special pricing on accommodations for those who would like to come and participate in the full weekend’s festivities.  To book for just the session is £160; to book the entire weekender package with accommodations is £195.  People can RSVP by reaching us at, or on the FACEBOOK event page. (£80/100 depending on the package) deposit is required at time of booking; we handle our deposits via PayPal address”

Sounds awesome, doesn’t it? They also have a Glasgow event on May 24th , and one for  London is scheduled for June 4th. (Check the Facebook Events page for details.) These are priced at £150 persession with a 50% deposit required. RSVP .

The thing I particularly like about their set up is the pricing. Over here in the UK,  most portrait session pricing seems to run off the “low sitting fee/high print fee” model. I know when I’ve been sucked into posing for apparently cheap photo family sessions, I’ve landed up spending a fortune on prints that I didn’t really budget for. I love the transparency of the pricing at Burlesque Me Baby (take note UK photographers!!) as the booking price includes the 2-hour session and digital copies of client’s images with full rights to share and print for personal use.

Come on girls! Lets start a Yummy-Mummy-Burlesque revolution! I’ll be posting all about my experience and showing off the photos with relish after the event so be sure to come back and check it out. Yes – I am cacking myself, but I don’t want to look back in ten or twenty years, (when all things bodily have ‘headed a south for winter’ shall we say?) and wish I’d grabbed the chance. So bring it on . . . and Burleque Me Baby!

(Now excuse me . . . I have crayon to clean from the walls and a soft play centre to sit in while I mentally tip my veiled bowler hat and sing “all that Jazz.)


fear is stupid



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We’re Going on a Bear Hunt . . . Tuff-Spot Style!

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We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury is a firm favourite in our house. Gibby loves it and knows it by heart. It’s not hard to see why it’s such a popular book either – Beautifully illustrated, repetitive and rhythmic, gently comical and with just enough drama for a little one.

So in out Tuff Spot today we went on our own bear hunt (with Peppa Pig and George as it happened, but any washable little figure would do, as would any little play house to re-enact the ending.)

Here’s what we used. . .


. . . but it'd be very easy to improvise your own snow/mud with other kitchen stuff. And a tray of water would've been fine for the river too, (although you can get water beads from Amazon and they’re great for sensory play).

This has easily been the favourite Tuff Spot activity so far. Gibby played for ages and kept coming back to it. She said the words to the story herself, then later in the day we played a lovely animation of the story on YouTube – check it out here – to accompany her play(for the narration only, but it is a nice little version to watch).

Ok – maybe our bear could’ve been a little more ferocious, and Peppa and George don’t feature in the original story, but The Giblet didn’t seem to care. . .

I think it’s safe to say that we WILL be going on a bear hunt again.


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If Only I’d Known . . .

If Only I’d Known . . .

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Idy Boo – A Review

Our little Gibby loves dinosaurs. I mean L-U-R-V-E-S dinosaurs. For some time now, her choice of bedtime companion has been a foot-long, very realistic T-Rex. We paint with dinosaurs, bath with dinosaurs and play with dinosaurs. Are you getting the idea yet?

SO – imagine my delight when I happened across the fabulous Facebook page of Idy Boo. The lady who is the talent behind Idy Boo makes the cutest fabric dinosaurs, and “pocket Pals” (little dolls approx 14.5cm. They come in owl styles, plush babies, pirates, superheroes and more. Also please excuse Mr WaterBirthPlease’s annoying habit of photobombing!)


All of Idy Boo’s wee critters are hand made and CE tested making them safe for children from birth. I saw, I smiled, I wanted
and I ordered. Not immediately mind you, it took me the best part of an entire evening to decide on the fabric! Seriously difficult decision as they were all so lovely.

photo (1)

We plumped for a very girly, vintage fabric. After all, it’s not every day you can combine girliness with dinosaurs. Idy Boo also sent an extra little Jurassic friend and a pocket pal for Gibby and I to put through their paces and review. For dino number two, we went for the super-hero/comic book fabric. SO cool. I was genuinely thrilled when they arrived, and so was Grace. (Being a big softy – I snuck them into her bedroom when she was fast asleep. She came charging into our room at 7am this morning shouting “MUMMY! SOME TEDDY DINOSAURS HAVE COME TO SEE ME!! SHOW YOU!”) Ace 🙂 Subsequently, they haven’t left her side all day.


Here’s what we loved about them:

– Beautifully stitched without losing the home-made feel that we’re big fans of in the WaterBirthPlease house.

– The little touches offered to us by Idy Boo. We had Graces name stitched onto her girl dinosaur and a little super-hero mask on the other. Ace.

Dino Name

– Super friendly service and prompt delivery of our items.

– Grace’s face when she met her new little friends. . . classic.

– Mummy’s face when she saw Grace’s face when she met her new little friends!

– The Pocket Pal – Grace loves putting things in her pockets (bit weird I know – but thats Gibby) so she loved her little owl too. I think these would also make great new born gifts. Babies would love the little taggies on them.

Pocket Pal

I would urge anyone to have a nosy at the Facbook page of Idy Boo, especially if, like me, you want to support small businesses, or you know a special little person with a love of all things dino. The dinosaurs are currently a fantastic introductory price of £12. I think that is superb value so I really would act fast if you like them! (Postage is £3.50 – with an extra £1 added for each extra one). Pocket Pals are £6.

I much prefer Gibby’s new bed time pal. x


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Dino Tuff Spot Fun!

Yes! I have Joined the Tuff Spot Mass-ive! I discovered this hidden gem of a messy-play world via my good friend Sue over on Ghostwriter Mummy  and we’ve  had SO much fun! In fact – we have even linked up with other bloggers prevelant in the messy play world ( Edspire’s blog for example – amazing ideas on there.) Anyhoo – if you haven’t got a clue what I’m blithering on about, than I shall explain:

Tuff Spot = mahoosive big jock-off tray to put messy stuff (and your child) in.

That’s about the size of it. Deisigned for mixing cement, but put to far better use by parents nation-wide by filling it with shaving foam, corn flour, paint and glitter. (Search for “Tuff Spot” on Amazon, E-Bay, or check out DIY/hardware stores.)

This week – Gibby and I have been going Dino-mad! We’ve had the ol’ tuff spot out pretty much daily. We’ve had dinosaur food in there (flour and coloured rice – I know! And you thought they ate plants and eachother and stuff!) We’ve had shaving foam snow drifts and water for the wee Jurassic rascals to splash in, Painting with dinosaurs, and most fun of all – a starkers Gibby happily diving into the lot!

Love our Tuff Spot . . . Love Messy Play  . . .


dino collage

Our top ten Tuff Spot ideas coming soon in honour of Messy Play for Malitda Mae xx



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